Workers’ Compensation for Independent Contractors

 

Workers Compensation InsuranceEmployees versus Independent contractors

In most states, workers’ comp insurance is a must for all employees who are accidentally injured when carrying out their duties and responsibilities.

The amount of insurance coverage usually depends on the level of risks inherent in the duties that each worker is assigned to. For instance, a roofing company, or a firm that requires their workers to work from higher distances with substantially high risks of falling will have a slightly higher amount of coverage as compared to a general-purpose ice cream vending shop. But what if you are an independent contractor?

Whether you are a self-employed worker or an independent contractor, you are, by law, required to carry workers’ compensation insurance. This depends on a number of factors not limited to an individual’s tolerance of risks.

Liability for Independent contractor’s injuries

The beauty of choosing to outsource your work to independent contractors is that you enjoy results and services with zero legal liabilities. The insurance and other legal worker’s liabilities are automatically transferred to the independent contractor.

While you are legally obligated to carry workers’ insurance compensation in the event, your workers are injured while undertaking their duties, and you bear no such responsibilities towards your independent contractor.

Consequently, independent contractors, in most states, need to carry with them workers’ compensation for contractors in case their workers are injured while performing their duties.

Most health insurance plans exude work injuries and related ailments. This is, however, a gray area that requires proper interpretation with a legal representative or has a conversation with your health insurer. Some of those health insurance policies exclude coverage for specific occupational injuries and sicknesses. However, some health coverage only accepts occupational injuries when such injuries can be covered by workers’ comp policy.

General liability

This protects your firm from a wide array of claims including bodily injuries, property damage, and many other claims that may arise in a work environment.

Most workers’ insurance compensation in some states pardon business owners. This just means that if you are operating as an independent contractor, you are, to a more considerable extent, not legally required to carry workers’ comp for yourself. However, there are certain exceptions. For example, in California, contractors working on roofing businesses are required by law to carry workers’ compensation insurance for contractors even if they don’t have employees.

Some states laws consider subcontractors as employees

Maybe you technically don’t have workers but from time to time you subcontract or have a part-time seasonal assistant. In most states, such sub-contractors are regarded as workers, and the laws necessitate workers’ compensation coverage. Therefore, it is of great importance that you have a comprehensive understanding of the state’s law.

Summing up, independent contractors can at times forgo workers’ comp insurance, but they have to understand the extent of such exceptions.

Call us to consult with one of our expert on worker compensation insurance for contractors.